unknown species - Franklin Park, South Nyack, New York

Asked August 20, 2017, 3:15 PM EDT

Hello, Would you please look at the three attached pictures of three different plants and advise of their common and/or technical name? Thank you. Sincerely, Glenn Sungela Congers, NY

Rockland County New York japanese honeysuckle kudzu virginia creeper

1 Response

Starting from the right:
Kudzu, which was introduced to the US as an ornamental plant in the late 1800s, and was planted throughout the southeast as a forage crop and to control erosion in the 1930s and 1940s. It has since become widespread and very aggressive/ Once established, kudzu plants grow rapidly, extending as much as 60 feet per season - or as much as a foot per day. It can rapidly smother and shade out native plants, and kill trees by girdling them and by adding so much weight that affected trees topple during storms. Kudzu has been reported to be invasive in natural areas from Connecticut to Florida and west to Texas. It grows well under a wide range of conditions and in many soil types, but prefers open, sunny areas like forest edges, abandoned fields, roadsides and disturbed areas.

Middle: Virginia creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia), a native, woody, dedicuous vine that climbs by means of tendrils with disks that fasten onto bark or rock. Its leaves have 5 leaflets (sometimes 3 or 7), which turn brilliant mauve, red and purple in early fall. A vigorous grower, it tolerates most soils and climatic conditions.

Left: The photo lacks some detail, so it's hard to make a 100% positive ID, but this could be Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica), which was introduced to the US in the early 1800s for ornamental, erosion control, and wildlife uses. It's since become invasive throughout the eastern US. It is adapted to a wide variety of habitats from full sun to shade. Honeysuckle is a fast-growing vine that twines around stems of shrubs, herbaceous plants and other vertical supports. In full sun it forms large tangles that smother and kill vegetation. It can kill shrubs and saplings by girdling.